Document Type: Original Paper
Department of Physics, School of Physical Sciences, Mizoram University (A Central University), Tanhril campus, Aizawl
Department of Physics, Mizoram University
Mizoram State Cancer Institute, Zemabawk, Aizawl-796017, Mizoram, India
Best radiography practice involves operational optimal machine performance, delivering cost effective healthcare services under appropriate safety conditions for workers and the public. This study aimed to investigate the safety status of conventional diagnostic X-ray installations in Mizoram, India.
Materials and Methods
Linearity of time (sec), linearity of current (mA), output reproducibility, table dose (μGy/mAs), peak voltage (kVp) accuracy and 16 essential safety parameters of 135 X-ray machines were considered. To measure output radiation and the effective peak potential of X-ray tube, battery-operated portable dosimeter and a portable wide-range digital kVp meter made by Fluke were used. Data were analyzed by using SPSS version 17.0 (SPSS, Inc., Chicago, IL, USA).
Among different electronic parameters, 59.2% linearity of time; 82.6% linearity of current; 89.7% kVp accuracy; 35.1% output reproducibility; 92.8% table dose were beyond acceptable limit. It was observed from 16 essential safety parameters that 98.7% X-ray machines did not receive proper quality assurance (QA) test as per Atomic Energy Regulatory Board, India guidelines, 1.9% installations employed lead-line patient entrance door, 46.8% machines were operated without any protective barrier, 83.1% units operated without personnel monitoring service, 92.2% of the facilities recorded repeated examination due to over/under exposures, spoilt films and patient movement.
It appears that the present study had more problems regarding X-ray generators than previous studies in different parts of the world. The reasons may be improper QA tests, old machine used without proper maintenance, power supply problems. Such problem causes repeated exposure which increases the population dose, cost of imaging, and duration of imaging. The authors recommend that proper quality control (QC) must be implemented immediately by monitoring each and every diagnostic X-ray installation frequently throughout every year. As proper QC program were not implemented in the past years, many installations were not following standard installation guidelines.